Nickel allergy is a common metal allergy and it is a common cause of contact dermatitis. Articles and substances that contain nickel that come in contact with the skin cause an allergic reaction in the form of eczema. Nickel can be found in jewelries such as earrings, jewelry chains, zipper, metal wrist straps and even button of clothes. Adults and children are susceptible to nickel allergy. It can lead to itching, rashes and small blisters that are filled with fluid. Once a person is allergic to nickel, he/she will remain allergic to this metal.
Nickel allergy develops by exposing the body to the metal for long periods of time. When the body develops allergy to nickel, the body will always react when the body comes in direct contact with the metal.
- Itching that can be moderate to severe
- Development of rashes on the surface of the skin
- Oozing from the rashes
- Presence of small blisters that are filled with fluid over the rash
- Swelling and burning sensation with redness of the affected area
- Apply cold compress on the affected area in order to lessen the itchiness and redness.
- Apply calamine lotion over the affected area in order to help lessen the itching and swelling.
- Wear gloves when handling metal that contains nickel.
- Eat fruits and vegetables that are rich in vitamin C and iron content since both helps prevent absorption of nickel from the gut.
- Soak a face towel in vinegar and apply it to the blisters in order to help in drying them out. Avoid using this vinegar compress if the skin is dry.
- Apply emollient creams or lotions such as petroleum jelly or mineral oil to help with the condition.
- Apply a moist compress which helps dry the blisters and lessen the itchiness. Soak a clean face towel or cloth in Burow’s solution which is an over-the-counter medication that contains aluminum acetate. It should be diluted white vinegar (1 ounce of white vinegar to 16 ounces of water) or tap water. Apply the compress on the affected area for at least 15-45 minutes several times every day.
- Apply the prescribed over-the-counter topical corticosteroid or hydrocortisone to minimize itchiness and promote healing of the rashes. Apply hydrocortisone to the area before applying a wet compress for better penetration in the skin.
- Take the prescribed over-the-counter oral histamines to lessen the itching for a short time and highly effective with this kind of condition.
- Avoid wearing jewelries that might contain nickel such as necklaces, earrings, and bracelets.
- Wear plastic frames for eyeglasses instead of the metal frames.
- Wear hypoallergenic jewelry.
- Eat foods that do not contain nickel such as meat, fish, poultry, cheese, cereals, bread, rice, cabbage, cauliflower, parsnips, potatoes and spinach.
- Avoid eating foods such as canned spaghetti and baked beans, broccoli, dried fruits, canned fruits, drinking chocolate, chocolate and green beans.